Thursday, April 3, 2014

How to Overspend on Marketing!

A sure way for you to go over budget on marketing this year is to not have a marketing plan created. You have probably heard the saying, that those who fail to plan, plan to fail. This is especially true when it comes to marketing plans.

Going back ten years to when I started Ag Printers, one of the most common frustrations of seed companies was the lack of time available to create and implement marketing programs. While I would not argue that time is scarce, I push back on the validity of that statement. Anything that is given priority has enough time to pursue and complete. 

Maybe it is a lack of the perceived importance of marketing in general. "Our products and service level speaks for itself. Right?" Wrong. We live it a world of instant information, persistent distraction and attention spans shorter than...(sorry, the phone rang and I got an email. Where was I?)

I challenge you today to carve out two hours to create a simple plan that will not only get your message out to your customers more, but will save you money on marketing. Imagine the freedom you would have when one of the many advertising reps call you, or the local high school asks you to advertise in their program, and you can simply and politely decline, as they are not in this year's marketing plan, but they can submit their proposal for next year and you can review it at your leisure!

For your plan, simply create a spreadsheet with the following elements. 

1.The product or service you want to promote

2.The offer you are going to communicate (Message)
3.The specific user group you will target (Market)
4.The vehicle(s) you will use to communicate your offer to your target(s) (Method)
5.The proposed date you want to launch the program
6.The proposed date you need to begin planning and production to hit the launch date

Granted, this is a bare bones, stripped-down plan, but it will get those of you who have never done a marketing program started. You will add to this as the years go by and you want more detail. The dates will give you accountability. Share them with your staff and keep each other on track. I would also suggest putting the dates into your digital calendar and have alarms or reminders set on your computer and your mobile devices!

When it comes to making and implementing your marketing plans, give us a call. It is our passion to help you grow your business!


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